888 adds Virginia after license granted
Online gambling firm 888 Holdings are now set to be operational in the state of Virginia after being approved for a sports betting license courtesy of the Virginia Lottery.
They will officially launch in early 2022 after they agreed to a partnership with US firm, Sports Illustrated with who they already collaborate in a number of other states.
Following the news, a statement from 888 revealed: “While a relatively new sports betting market, sports betting in Virginia has already experienced significant growth. According to the Virginia Lottery, to date over $1.95bn has been wagered, including $293m in September 2021 – a 61% increase on the month prior.”
Virginia becomes the ninth state for 888
Already the company has a significant presence in the US, with Virginia now the ninth state that it will be operational in, adding to Colorado, Delaware, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Since September of this year, 888 has ramped up its ambitious and aggressive expansion plans in the US, with early signs indicating that this is set to become the largest online gambling market in the world over the next few years, with estimates indicating this will be worth upwards of $120 billion in a short space of time.
It certainly represents an interesting option for 888, particularly with Virginia not having any sports franchises in the state, which begs the question as to how much interest there will be in sports betting.
Senior President and Head of US for 888 Holdings, Yaniv Sherman commented on what this means for the continued progress of the company in the US, stating: “This is an important milestone for 888 which enhances our foothold in the US online sports betting and igaming market.”
An indicator for expansion in North Carolina?
Currently, neighbouring state, North Carolina only allows sports betting online within a set boundary of some sporting venues, which means state residents are limited. While full legislation is likely at some point, having a license in Virginia could be a strategic move from 888.
What this could do is provide evidence of how many sports bettors cross state lines from North Carolina into Virginia to place bets, as is currently the case for New Yorkers who make the trip into New Jersey just for this purpose.
As a result, this could provide valuable data and insights for 888, should they wish to consider applying for a license in North Carolina if or when full-scale online gambling becomes approved.